The Manipur Government has taken the step of suspending five police personnel in connection with the incident on May 4, where two women were reportedly stripped and paraded by a mob in Thoubal district. This area has experienced ongoing ethnic violence for the past three months. The decision was made shortly after a video of the incident surfaced on July 19 and gained widespread attention. Despite protests, including from certain sections of the majority community, the suspensions have been upheld. One of the women involved was allegedly subjected to gang rape.
In a recent instance of violence, a mob in Langol Games village set fire to 15 houses in Imphal West district. Security forces responded by using tear gas to disperse the crowd, resulting in a 45-year-old man sustaining injuries from the firing. In response to this escalation, an additional ten companies of central forces, consisting of personnel from various forces, have been dispatched to augment the existing security presence.
To address the incident of an armoury being looted on August 3 in Bishnupur, the Manipur Police have initiated a time-bound inquiry led by an Inspector General-rank officer. The looting at the 2nd India Reserve Battalion headquarters resulted in the theft of approximately 19,000 bullets. Efforts have led to the recovery of 1,195 looted arms, with 1,057 retrieved from valley districts and 138 from hill districts. Police are actively conducting raids to reclaim the stolen arms and ammunition.
The ethnic clashes that erupted on May 3 emerged from a ‘Tribal Solidarity March’ held in the hill districts to protest the Meitei community’s demand for Scheduled Tribe (ST) status. Tragically, these incidents of violence have claimed the lives of over 160 individuals.
The Kuki People’s Alliance (KPA), a partner of the NDA, has withdrawn its support for the Manipur government led by N Biren Singh. The KPA holds two seats in the 60-member House, while the BJP has 32 MLAs and receives support from five NPF MLAs and three Independents. Opposition MLAs include seven from the NPP, five from the Congress, and six from the JD(U). Many Kuki MLAs are unlikely to attend the upcoming Assembly session due to the ongoing ethnic violence.
To address the recent escalation, an additional deployment of five Central Reserve Police Force companies, three Border Security Force companies, and one each from the Indo-Tibetan Border Police and the Sashastra Seema Bal has been enacted.
The incident involving the looting of an armoury led to the theft of around 19,000 bullets from the Naranseina police facility. Authorities have managed to recover 1,195 looted arms, with 1,057 retrieved from valley districts and 138 from hill districts.